Wednesday, April 11, 2007

The Tortoise Habit

I've spent the last couple of weeks raving about The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp, and I've had enough people write comments or send me emails that I'm beginning to think I should be opening a bookstore and selling the book.

I have really found it inspiring as well as simply feeling as if she understands so many of the things I experience on a day to day basis, even though choreography and writing are not exactly the same sorts of creativity. I wouldn't be able to choreograph anything, though apparently Ms. Tharp can write. And write very well, I might add.

But now that I've read it, I'm still dealing with the book -- and besides getting up and staggering into the office in the morning with my eyes shut, and opening them to the scene I'm working on, I have devised another method of getting this book finished.

I'm writing 150 words an hour.

This is, I've decided, The Tortoise Habit of creativity. I used to call my approach to writing, The Hummingbird Approach, because I would nip in and out of the office twenty times a day and sit down and get a bit done -- and sometimes I stuck around and wrote LOTS.

That isn't happening this time. Every book is different. This book seems to require a slow steady approach. But there are no bursts of 1500 words. There are no surges of 3000 words. But at least there is the steady drip drip drip of 150 words at a time.

At 150 words an hour for 14 hours a day, I get 2100 words a day. And I can get Flynn back to Ireland by early next week if I keep it up.

The slow tortoise to Ireland.

It has a certain ring to it. But don't expect to see it make the title short list.

# # #

I've done the MySpace thing. You can check it out if you click on the link. It's pretty rudimentary so far. And it may always be rudimentary. Between them Michelle Styles and Kate Hardy have provided me with enough instruction that I have found "friends."

Now if I can only figure out how to change the background and the area around the boxes to a single color like Jane Porter has -- only not Jane's color.

I have not been able to achieve that yet. There is only so much time left over every hour after the 150 words.


Blogger Michelle Styles said...

Hooray for your tortise type creativity. Slow and steady wins the race.

The Creativity Book is great.It sparks so many connections. Thank you for blogging about it.

I will ask my eldest when he returns how to do backgropunds on myspace. He swears it is very easy.
Apparently the thing that takes a long time to load is the videos.

12 April, 2007  
Anonymous Kate Hardy said...

Michelle - me, too, please, on the MySpace instructions?

Anne - now I have 'Slow Boat to China' in my head. Except it's reworded 'Tortoise to Ireland'. Even the scansion is perfect. Arrgh!!

12 April, 2007  
Blogger Liz Fielding said...

What's slower than a tortoise? Whatever it is, that's me.

And I've had two goes at the myspace background -- thank you, Michelle -- but so far without success. It's because I'm not concentrating, but I'll get there!

12 April, 2007  
Blogger Liz Fielding said...

Oh, good grief. I've caught exclamation marks...

12 April, 2007  
Blogger Anne McAllister said...

Michelle has just dragged me out of my background color morass (however you spell it). I kept getting white space and she said, "No, you do it THIS way," and finally I gave up. And she said, "Yes, you've done it. It looks fine." I think I just didn't let it refresh. It does look fine. And now I'm 750 words behind. Sigh.

Snails, Liz. I think snails are possibly slower than tortoises. But perhaps not. Shall we race?

Did your book ever arrive? Hope so.

(No exclamation marks)

12 April, 2007  

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